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Foreign Ministry denies speculation over resignations of GGGI, GCF chiefs

All News 16:44 April 29, 2016

SEOUL, April 29 (Yonhap) -- The Foreign Ministry denied speculation Friday that the heads of two South Korea-based international organizations battling climate change have offered to resign due in part to Seoul's lack of attention to an environmental agenda.

Yvo de Boer, director general of the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), and Hela Cheikrouhou, executive director of the Green Climate Fund (GCF), have offered to step down. Their decisions spawned speculation that they might have felt unhappy that the climate change issue is not a policy priority for Seoul, whereas the preceding government had prioritized it.

Stressing that the two leaders opted to resign because of "personal reasons," the ministry said that Seoul has made "active efforts" to provide financial contributions and other support to both the GGGI and GCF -- headquartered in Seoul and Incheon, respectively.

"The GGGI director-general has stated to the members (of the organization) that he offered to resign strictly for personal reasons," the ministry said in a press release, noting that his replacement will be picked through an international recruitment process.

Yvo de Boer began his four-year term in April 2014 and is set to leave office on Sept. 30.

The GCF executive director's three-year term is due to expire in September, and she has not applied to serve for another term, the ministry said. The fund is to pick a new chief in its key conference slated for June.

The ministry underscored that since 2013, Seoul has contributed US$10 million to the GGGI annually -- the largest amount among its 26 members. It also said that Seoul spearheaded the efforts to raise the initial fund worth $10.3 billion to operate the GCF.

sshluck@yna.co.kr
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